Home runs not enough, Wildcats blast Huskies


Mingda Wu

NIU junior first baseman Colin Summerhill (8) is declared safe after sliding into second base on a double in the bottom of the first inning. (Mingda Wu | Northern Star)

By Alex Crowe, Assistant Sports Editor

DeKALB – Home runs from senior outfielder Malik Peters, junior outfielder and catcher Colin Summerhill and junior infielder and outfielder Andrew Smart weren’t enough to stop the Northwestern University Wildcats from blowing out the Huskies by a final score of 16-5. 

The Wildcats’ (6-25, 3-6 Big Ten) win is their second over NIU (7-26, 4-10 MAC) this season. The first was a 15-11 shootout on March 28. 


Smart, Peters and Summerhill led the way for the Huskies at the plate, each blasting a home run. It was Peters’ third home run this season and Summerhill’s team-leading sixth. Smart’s longball was a two-run shot and his second of the season. 

“It was nice to see Malik, Colin and Andrew have quality at-bats and put the barrel on the ball,” head coach Mike Kunigonis said via NIU Athletics. “We barreled up some balls today, but they were hit right at guys whether it was to second, third or centerfield.”

Junior infielder Aaron Harper had the other RBI for the Huskies – a groundout in the bottom of the seventh inning to score junior infielder Eric Erato. 


Junior pitcher Jacob Wilde started on the mound for the Huskies and struggled early. Northwestern plated five runs in the second inning and four runs in the third inning, highlighted by a second-inning home run by sophomore catcher and infielder Alex Calarco.

Wilde allowed nine earned runs on nine hits in three innings of work. 

The Huskies used five other pitchers after Wilde exited the game in the fourth inning – sophomore pitcher Mason Ruh, junior pitcher Jackson Stewart, senior pitchers Nick Bonk and Brandon Doty and freshman outfielder and pitcher Jake Kohanzo. Ruh and Stewart allowed no earned runs, but the trio of Bonk, Doty and Kohanzo allowed a combined seven earned runs. 

After the Wildcats’ early offensive explosion, the Huskies got the score back to 9-4 after Peters’ home run in the fifth inning and Summerhill and Smart’s home runs in the sixth inning. 

Northwestern added seven more runs over the remaining three innings, including three runs in the top of the seventh to seal the 16-5 win. 

With another game looming Wednesday, Kunigonis said the team needs to shift its focus to the next contest. 

“We had a clean first inning and a chance to get in front early, but just didn’t get the hit when we needed it,” Kunigonis said. “Northwestern got the hits when they needed them. We just need to flush this game and get ready for tomorrow (Wednesday) because it’s a double midweek.”


The Huskies have a quick turnaround as they take on the Illinois State University Redbirds at 3 p.m. Wednesday at Ralph McKinzie Field at Walt and Janice Owens Park. The game will be streamed on NIU All-Access and live stats will be available on Sidearm Stats.